Crisis is worsening in the United Kingdom, under the weight of supply problems caused by the Brexit and Govt-19 epidemics, affecting supermarkets and restaurants, through factories, employers urging the government to act, especially with the approach of the New Year holidays.
McDonald’s announced this week that it currently does not offer milkshakes or bottled beverages in the UK, and competitor Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) has warned of a shortage on its menu.
As part of that, Nanto’s restaurant chain was forced to close about 50 restaurants last week due to a shortage of poultry. This problem also affects high-end Novikov restaurants that do not have Japanese vacuum beef.
Among distributors, Icelandic chain and rival cooperatives also report shortages of goods on their shelves.
In the industrial sector, car factories were forced to halt production due to a shortage of electronic components, which led to a nearly 30% decline in car sales in July, while production fell to its lowest level since the fifties.
Moreover, the supply crisis has affected small and medium-sized enterprises, especially in the construction sector, with some lacking supplies in addition to labor shortages.
The Confederation of Indian Industry (CBI) has said that distributor stocks have reached record lows in nearly 40 years.
Migration of migrant workers
Distribution problems that have been going on for months threaten to hit British companies and affect the economic recovery.
The crisis has been exacerbated by Britain’s exit from the EU, which came into effect on January 1, making it difficult for workers to enter the UK from the EU.
As the UK is ashamed of these businesses that have long working hours for geeky wages, they make up the majority of employees in logistics companies.
The Govt-19 epidemic, which has affected supplies, logistics, transport and restaurants for months, has led to an increase in the migration of foreign workers.
Jonathan Portes, a professor at King’s College London, noted that these problems with the corona virus were seen “all over Europe”, but that the situation in the United Kingdom was exacerbated by the “Brexit effect” because many EU workers (to Britain) did not return. They may not want to go back. It could also affect the immigration system after the UK’s exit from the EU in terms of employment for companies.
The British Distribution Federation (BRC) has warned that new rules for importing animal products from the UK could worsen the situation from next October.
Christmas items are coming (to the UK) and many companies are struggling to book seats on ships, especially as it is a major source of goods made from China, said Jonathan Owens, a logistics expert at Salford University.
Companies are trying to adapt. Supermarket chain Tesco and e-commerce company Amazon have not hesitated to offer recruitment bonuses in the UK to attract drivers or shoppers who need to serve their customers.
The meat industry is considering partnerships with prisons to re-integrate some inmates.
Industry representatives and employers are increasingly urging the government to amend post-Brexit immigration rules so that foreign truck drivers, especially those from Eastern European countries, can easily travel to the UK.
Some are demanding the use of immigration facilities provided to qualified workers.
Richard Walker, chairman of the Icelandic group, said truck drivers “should be replaced by British drivers, but it will take time to train them. Before that, a lot of Christmas supplies must be sent to us.” (AFP)
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